After an impressive showing in 2010 that many thought would lay the foundation for future success, Ghana haven't lived up to expectations. They're still a quality counter-attacking side, though, with familiar names like Kwando Asamoah, Kevin-Prince Boateng, and Andre Ayew likely to start. They may be nobody's favourites to advance from this World Cup's group of death, but then as it is this World Cup's group of death, nobody would be especially surprised if they did. And beating the United States for the third time in a row at the World Cup would certainly be a massive boost to their chances.
The United States, meanwhile, are a side with one eye on the future as Jurgen Klinsmann looks to establish a new generation of talent. The biggest casualty to that has been Landon Donovan, whose omission from the side has been an inescapable talking point in American coverage of the World Cup. On the whole, though, the USMNT look a better—or at least a more promising and entertaining—side for Klinsmann's tinkering, and if they'd landed in any group but Group G they would have at least been dark horse candidates to advance. As it is, the realistic goal is a strong showing that would help to lay the foundation for future international competitions.
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